SRS Spotlight: Sarah Shallwani, MSc(OT) Class of 2012

Sarah Shallwani

After graduating from McMaster University’s Occupational Therapy (OT) program in 2012, Sarah Shallwani took a position as a Community Occupational Therapist at CBI Home Health in Hamilton, ON, where she currently works, and is loving every minute of it. Working in this role has taught her the importance of problem solving and seeking out answers on her own, and she is appreciative of the problem-based and self-directed nature of the McMaster program, which provided her with the essential skills necessary for independent practice. “The self-directed approach encouraged me to take initiative to seek out the answers by effectively utilizing resources,” says Sarah. “Through working on case scenarios using practice process frameworks, I was provided with a realistic take on what clinical practice would entail, and the steps that are involved from the point of receiving the client referral to the point of discharge. This approach strengthened my critical thinking and clinical reasoning skills, which are essential skills in practice.”

Sarah is also appreciative of the fact that there was a large sense of community within the program, as she believed that this added to her experience as a student Occupational Therapist. “The benefits of McMaster’s team-based approach was evident to me early on in the program, since I found working closely with my peers provided me with the opportunity to learn about unique perspectives and experiences that you would otherwise never consider while working through a case scenario independently.”

As Sarah moves forward in her career, she continuously draws from the set of skills and experiences that she gained from the OT program. “The placements as well as classroom discussions have enabled me to clinically reason through challenging scenarios and defend my position when needed.”

Written by: Taylor Boer | Hamilton, ON | August 2015

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School of Rehabilitation Sciences
Faculty of Health Sciences, McMaster University
Institute of Applied Health Sciences,
Room 403, 1400 Main St. W. Hamilton, ON L8S 1C7


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